Mountain was a big band named for their big guitarist, Leslie West. Sometimes considered precursors to heavy metal, the band was hard and bluesy. It’s a damned shame that their entire catalog has been reduced to “Mississippi Queen.”
Mountain’s Woodstock set earns a split decision in most debates. People seem to either love it or hate it. Me? I love it. Just listen to that riff on “Southbound Train.” Come on!
Their post-Woodstock history is convoluted, so I’m going to take a shortcut and simply state that the original lineup split in 1972. Felix Pappalardi, the other big creative force in Mountain, was killed by his wife in 1983. There’s a story for you to Google. Weren’t expecting a homework assignment, were you?
Leslie West is still out there gigging but he’s had some health issues. I’m glad to see that he’s still getting it done, though.
Here’s Mountain’s Woodstock set list, all of which is available on a bootleg named Mountain: Live at the Woodstock Festival / New Canaan HS 1969 with exception to the songs marked with a (?). I’m not entirely sure that these three songs were actually part of Mountain’s set list. The quality of the bootleg isn’t as good as the official releases, though, so below I’ve listed where you can find cleaned up copies.
1. Blood of the Sun (Woodstock: 40 Years on: Back to Yasgur’s Farm (CD))
2. Stormy Monday (Mountain: Live at the Woodstock Festival / New Canaan HS 1969 (CD))
3. Theme for an Imaginary Western (Woodstock: 40 Years on: Back to Yasgur’s Farm (CD))
4. Long Red (Mountain: Live at the Woodstock Festival / New Canaan HS 1969 (CD))
5. For Yasgur’s Farm (Woodstock: 40 Years on: Back to Yasgur’s Farm (CD))
6. Beside the Sea (Woodstock: The Director’s Cut Ultimate Collector’s Edition (DVD))
7. Waiting to Take You Away (Mountain: Live at the Woodstock Festival / New Canaan HS 1969 (CD))
8. Dreams of Milk and Honey > Guitar Solo (?)
9. Blind Man (?)
10. Dirty Shoes Blues (?)
11. Southbound Train (Woodstock: 40 Years on: Back to Yasgur’s Farm (CD))
Your official Woodstock soundtrack song count to date: 69
Update: On August 2, 2019, Rhino Records released Woodstock – Back to the Garden: The Definitive 50th Anniversary Archive and changed the game forever. With exception to two Hendrix tracks and one Sha Na Na cut, the massive box set contains complete sets from every Woodstock artist—even those long believed lost or never recorded.
Here is Mountain‘s set as it appears on the Back to the Garden archive, including announcements, etc.:
1. Chip Monck – “The brown acid that is circulating around us is not specifically too good”
2. BLOOD OF THE SUN
3. STORMY MONDAY
4. THEME FOR AN IMAGINARY WESTERN
5. LONG RED
6. WHO AM I BUT YOU AND THE SUN (FOR YASGUR’S FARM)
7. BESIDE THE SEA
8. WAITING TO TAKE YOU AWAY
9. DREAMS OF MILK AND HONEY
10. SOUTHBOUND TRAIN
11. Chip Monck – “The green acid is really a great deal more serious than we thought”
12. Chip Monck & Joshua White – “Open your eyes wide, ‘cause here it comes”